BEIJING, Sept 17 (Reuters) - Base metals prices fell sharply
in early Asian trade on Monday on reports that U.S. tariffs on
$200 billion of Chinese goods could be imposed immediately.
    The tit-for-tat trade row between the world's top two
economies has left investors fearing that demand for industrial
metals will soften. FUNDAMENTALS: 
    * COPPER: Three-month copper on the London Metal Exchange
 fell as much as 1.9 percent to $5,861.50 a tonne and
stood at $5,890 a tonne as of 0136 GMT, after shedding 1 percent
on Friday. The most-traded November copper contract on the
Shanghai Futures Exchange slipped 1.4 percent to 47,940
yuan ($6,977.86)a tonne.
    * TARIFFS: U.S. President Donald Trump is likely to announce
new tariffs on about $200 billion on Chinese imports as early as
Monday, a senior administration official told Reuters on
    * OTHER METALS: LME nickel fell furthest, tumbling
as much as 3.2 percent overnight to $12,250 a tonne, its lowest
since Sept. 12, before trimming losses to around 2 percent. Only
Shanghai tin was in positive territory, inching up 0.1
    * TAXES: Chile's congress is studying a proposal for an
additional royalty payment for copper and lithium miners
operating in the country to bolster the development of the
regions around their deposits, according to a draft seen by
    * HYDRO/RIO: Norway's Hydro said on Friday it had
dropped plans to buy several of Rio Tinto's,
assets, including an aluminium plant in Iceland, after approval
from European Commission regulators took longer than
    * PERU: Brazilian mining company Nexa Resources,
MIL.LM plans to invest some $1.17 billion in copper and zinc
projects in Peru and Brazil over the next five years, the
company's general manager Ricardo Porta said on Friday.

    * DRC: The prime minister of Democratic Republic of Congo
will sign a decree in the coming days to designate cobalt and
other minerals as "strategic" and therefore subject to higher
royalties, Mines Minister Martin Kabwelulu said on Saturday.